Sen. Steve Daines praised Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett on Thursday, lending his full support for her appointment to the court.
Daines, who is up for reelection this year, met with Barrett earlier in the week as she makes her rounds through the U.S. Senate.
“During our meeting, we talked extensively about our Founding Fathers’ vision for the Second Amendment as an individual right to bear arms and what that means for our Montana way of life,” Daines said in a statement. “We talked about the importance of preventing liberal West Coast governors from killing Montana coal and energy jobs.”
Sen. Lindsey Graham, who is also up for reelection this year, said he plans to start Barrett’s confirmation hearing on Oct. 12 with a vote pending on Oct. 22 advancing her to the Senate floor.
Trump announced his nomination of Barrett last weekend as he pushes to replace the late Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the court before the November election, setting up a conservative court for generations.
The timing of the nomination, with many states already voting, has led to accusations of hypocrisy in some political camps. Republicans blocked former President Barack Obama’s appointment to the court in 2016, saying it wasn’t proper to make such an appointment during an election year.
“Four years ago, McConnell and his allies made up a rule that the Senate can’t vote on a Supreme Court nominee eight months before an election, a rule they now intend to break by ramming one through just days before election day when hundreds of thousands of Montanans will have already voted,” Sen. Jon Tester said in a statement.
Daines said the circumstances have changed, with Republicans holding both the Senate and the White House.
“Judge Amy Coney Barrett is a brilliant jurist and a minivan mom … she is the kind of jurist that Montanans will look up to, someone they’d want on the Supreme Court,” Daines said Thursday. “I believe Judge Barrett will be faithful to the Constitution, and she has my full support to become our next Supreme Court Justice,” Daines said Thursday.”